Spring flooding hits Midwest; Southeast drought eases

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:04 PM GMT on March 20, 2008

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This year's annual spring flooding season is upon us, and it's been a worse flood year than usual across much of the Midwestern U.S. At least 13 people have been killed due to the flooding this week, with another three persons missing. A slow moving storm system brought rains in excess of ten inches to the region (Figure 1). These rains, combined with melting from unusually heavy snows this winter, have led to the floods.


Figure 1. Heavy rains exceeding 10 inches have fallen in some portions of the Midwest over the past week. Image credit: NOAA.

According to NOAA, 224 cities are experiencing flooding today, with major flooding reported in 13 cities in Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, and Illinois. As snow continues to melt and runoff from the recent rains continues to increase the flooding, an additional 13 cities are expected to observe major flooding in the next 48 hours. Fortunately, no heavy rain is expected in the next three days, so a long duration flooding event is not likely.


Figure 2. The NOAA flood outlook calls for significant river flooding across much of the Midwest through Monday. Image credit: NOAA.

Flooding outlook for this Spring
According to NOAA, Above-normal flood potential is expected this Spring in much of the Mississippi River basin, the Ohio River basin, the lower Missouri River basin, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, most of New York, all of New England, and portions of the West, including Colorado and Idaho. Snow depths up to a foot above usual in upstate New York and much of New England could cause flooding in the Connecticut River Valley; locations in the mountains of Colorado and Idaho have 150 to 200 percent of average water contained in the snow pack, leading to a higher than normal flood potential there; and Wisconsin and northern Illinois have had heavy snows this winter that could cause continued flooding concerns this Spring.

Southeast drought continues to improve
On the plus side, the area of the Southeast U.S. covered by the severest form of drought--exceptional drought--has shrunk to a small spot over southern Tennessee/northern Alabama, and Georgia is free of exceptional drought for the first time since July. The drought is expected to continue to improve between now and June over the Southeast U.S.

Jeff Masters

Batesville's west side is flooded. (pb4ugo)
Hundreds of residents ere evacuated earlier today. As the water continues to rise, hundreds more may have to leave their homes.
Batesville's west side is flooded.
Flooding Strikes NE Arkansas & SE Missouri (ArkaTechHog77)
Severe flooding hits the area. My stepfather took a friend up and snapped these shots. Photos taken around HWY 53 area around Qulin and Poplar Bluff. Others taken in Clay County, Arkansas.
Flooding Strikes NE Arkansas & SE Missouri
Kroger 3 (Hawg8)
Local flooding
Kroger 3

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414. hurricane23
4:42 PM EDT on March 24, 2008
413. TEXASYANKEE43 4:42 PM EDT on March 24, 2008
411. hurricane23 8:07 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Almost forgot for those that have never visited the NHC here is your chance to see what it looks like inside.



I'd like to see it in full operation during an actual huricane.

Its an incredible experience! I was there during charley back in 04.
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413. TEXASYANKEE43
8:26 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
411. hurricane23 8:07 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Almost forgot for those that have never visited the NHC here is your chance to see what it looks like inside.



I'd like to see it in full operation during an actual huricane. They must go into some kind of lockdown mode???
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412. weathermanwannabe
4:14 PM EDT on March 24, 2008
Just went online and found the story....Wow..

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Severe thunderstorms and at least two tornadoes hit northern Florida on Friday, killing two people, causing minor injuries, destroying several homes and knocking down power lines.

*********, who lost her home in 1992 when Hurricane Andrew hit Homestead, was happy to survive the weather outside Tallahassee. She was knocked to the floor in her bedroom when high winds blew the home off its foundation, ripped away the roof and shredded the brick fireplace.

"It was just awful," said *******. "This is my second round."


God Bless Her.................
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411. hurricane23
4:06 PM EDT on March 24, 2008
Funny the CMC has some company!Before anyone begins to worry this is not going to happen.Any models skill at 300 plus hours most of the time should not be taken serious.Skill level is very poor.If anything it should be used as sign that tropical season will be here before you know it.

GFS @ 384!



www.AdriansWeather.com

Almost forgot for those that have never visited the NHC here is your chance to see what it looks like inside.Living in miami ive had the chance to visit on many occasions but for those who have not had the opportunity here is your chance.

Those rooms included in the virtual tour are the National Hurricane Center operations, the Tropical Analysis and Forecast Branch (TAFB) operations, the Chief Aerial Reconnaissance Coordination All Hurricanes (CARCAH), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) liaison, Media & Seminar Room, NOAA Miami Regional Library, and the NOAA National Weather Service Miami Forecast Office.


NHC Virtual Tour
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410. weathermanwannabe
3:57 PM EDT on March 24, 2008
Just found out that I have a friend at work (who just told me and showed me pictures)that lost her home (in North Florida near Tallahassee)when it was hit by a tornado up here a few weeks ago (says she "felt" the house float up in the air and drop back down) and it turns out that it was lifted off the foundation and set back down......The good news is that she is ok (cuts and bruises) but the bad news is, as she told me this morning, that she moved up here in 1993 to get away from Hurricanes after losing her home in Hurricane Andrew (she lived in Homestead at the time)...........What horrific luck but she is a trooper............
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408. BahaHurican
3:10 PM EDT on March 24, 2008
Afternoon all.

Things are clouding over here this afternoon, and it looks like we may get some of the rain we missed out on yesterday. So far it's still dry, though.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22140
407. louisianaboy444
7:07 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Hello everyone i dont know if anyone remembers me i'm glad to be back this year...the spring has been quite violent with a dangerous tornado season....i was wondering if some think there could be a link between a hyperactive tornado season and the oncoming hurricane season
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406. Thundercloud01221991
7:01 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Hello is anyone on this afternoon
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405. Tazmanian
5:54 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
it seen like some can see it and some cant see it
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404. TEXASYANKEE43
5:51 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
i noted on some blogs like my blog



I saw in your blog where it says "Write a message to Tazmanian"
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403. TEXASYANKEE43
5:47 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
402. Tazmanian 5:06 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
i noted on some blogs like my blog and dr m blog that the Contact This Blog's Aurthor. is missing


has any one noted the same thing on there blogs???




I see it up in the top right.
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402. Tazmanian
5:06 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
i noted on some blogs like my blog and dr m blog that the Contact This Blog's Aurthor. is missing


has any one noted the same thing on there blogs???
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401. KoritheMan
5:02 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Tropical cyclone (tc) 26s located approximately 360 nm east of the
Cocos Islands, has tracked southeastward at 04 knots over the past 06
hours. Animated infrared satellite imagery depicts improved convect-
ive banding and consolidation over the past 12 hours. A 240822z trmm
37ghz image and a 241042z AMSU image depict a well-defined low-
level circulation center (LLCC) positioned slightly east of a
developing CDO feature. Animated water vapor imagery shows good
poleward outflow ahead of a midlatitude trough southwest of the
system and a developing anticyclone over the center. Upper level
analysis indicates a favorable environment for further development
with weak to moderate vertical wind shear and high ocean heat
content. The current intensity is based on the high end of Dvorak
estimates of 30-35 knots. Tc 26s is forecast to track increasingly
southward under the steering influence of the low to mid-level
subtropical ridge located east of the system. The steering ridge
is expected to remain relatively weak as the system consolidates,
therefore, track speeds are slow through the period. This forecast
is slightly faster and west of the consensus due to poor initial-
ization of the gfni tracker and initial erroneous equatorward track.
Tc 26s is expected to intensify at a 10-15 knot per day rate due
to favorable outflow and SST.
This warning supersedes and cancels
ref a, navpacmetoccen 240221z Mar 08 tropical cyclone formation
alert (wtxs21 pgtw 240230). Maximum significant wave height at
241200z is 12 feet. Next warnings at 250300z and 251500z.
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400. Weather456
11:51 AM AST on March 24, 2008
Tropical Cyclone 26S

Issued 1600 UTC Mon 24 Mar 2008

Tropical cyclone 26S is located near 13.3S-103.2E drifting southeastward. Estimated surface winds are near 35 knots and estimated minimum central pressure is at 997 millibars. Wind shear is northeasterly at 20 knots and sea surface temperatures are 28C.

The center of 26S was determined using QuikSCAT, microwave imagery, total precipitable water measurements, 850 mb vorticity and short-wave infrared imagery. Surface winds and pressure were estimated using QuikSCAT which showed a few uncontaminated wind barbs of 35 knots and dvorak intensity techniques which showed a 0.40 cloud band which corresponds to CI 2.5, 35 knots and 997 mb. Recent MSAT infrared imagery showed the cyclone associated with very cold convection with the low level circulation on the eastern edge of the convection as seen in microwave imagery due to 20 knots of northeasterly wind shear. However, there are signs that vertical wind shear is decreasing over the system as the cold cloud cover has become more symmetrical and organized near the LLCC, thus intensity maybe higher than 35 knots. Furthermore, there is a weak outflow vent to the south of the system that should aid in development. Currently, both the GFS and CMC take the system towards the southeast under the influence of a weak ridge induced by the passage of mid-latitude trough; but the GFS weakens the system by Thursday, while the CMC shows a much more significant tropical cyclone nearing the coast of Northwestern Australia, that same time. My thinking is that the cyclone should intensify to a moderate tropical cyclone based on favorable conditions but not as intense as the CMC forecast.

by W456



00Z CMC Forecast Valid 84 hrs



00Z GFS

Shortwave Infrared Imagery with QuikSCAT winds and synoptic observations from buoy and ships overlaid. Some of the tools used for finding position and intensity.



An earlier microwave overpass by TRMM

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
399. Ivansrvivr
2:23 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
The everglades south of the lake need water too and they did get plenty of rain. Still as it gets hotter, and sun angle increases Lake O will drop faster into spring.
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398. Ivansrvivr
2:20 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Storm you only got .39 from all that. It topped my rain guage off (roughly 6 inches) The heaviest rain was yesterday around 7 a.m or so. I think the Lake got some good rain.
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396. TheCaneWhisperer
2:06 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Broward County seemed to get the most out of this storm SW. Over 5" on Saturday alone and tons more yesterday.
395. Thundercloud01221991
2:16 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Good morning
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390. TheCaneWhisperer
1:04 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Morning All!

We got that much anticipated rain Storm W. A little more than expected as well, smiles all around. Good day to ya.
389. pottery
8:54 AM AST on March 24, 2008
Good Morning from 11n 61w.
Looking at the Sat. Images and the water vapour loops today, and noting some un-seasonal equatorial moisture in the mid/low altitudes from 30w to 55 w or thereabouts.
Also, no sign of Sahara dust as yet and this is good/bad. By this time last year the dust was thick, and I suggested a "boo" Atlantic Hurricane season. Came to pass too. The 2 storms that became major Hurricanes last year only got going when they passed 60 w, out of the influence of the SAL.
The current set up could of course change tomorow, and other things also apply.
In the meantime, I'm saying that if we dont see an increase in SAL before June, I would expect that this year the Tropical Atlantic could become a most interesting area ................
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388. NEwxguy
12:55 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
GM all,still waiting for a little preview of spring here in New England,but do see anything for the forseeable future,hope everyone is safe in the flood areas of the Mississippi
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 878 Comments: 15739
387. philliesrock
8:52 AM EDT on March 24, 2008
Michael, you should see this:

http://www.easternuswx.com/bb/index.php?showtopic=160831
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386. weathermanwannabe
8:38 AM EDT on March 24, 2008
Good Morning Folks.......A little cooler weather over the next few days for the SE/North Florida as some dry/cold air pushes in but it should be nice for the next week....Also, the Bermuda High will start to develop and slide into it's Springtime position off the coast; who knows where it will be during the peak of Hurricane Season but where it "parks" over the next two months will be a factor in early season predictions as far as potential CONUS threats......(Same predicitons last year which forcasted a dire situation for the Gulf/Florida which, thankfully, never materialized)........You just never know and I am no fan of long-term predictions when it comes to H season....
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383. biff4ugo
12:07 PM GMT on March 24, 2008
Hope you all had a great Easter Weekend.
I didn't hear about the south Florida flooding many of you seem to be talking about, but I was having a great vacation all week at a water management conference.
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382. KoritheMan
7:26 AM GMT on March 24, 2008
That pic was funny in a weird way, STL. Heh.
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377. CCTXangel
9:08 PM CDT on March 23, 2008
Good evening everyone! How are the tropics looking? Any new updates?
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376. KoritheMan
1:52 AM GMT on March 24, 2008
is this the last cold front set up????

I hope so. I'm sick of the cold.
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374. HIEXPRESS
8:16 PM EDT on March 23, 2008
359. weatherfromFlorida 11:42 AM EDT
Hi, first time poster, not new to the site, I have been watching from 2005.

Is this year going to be a La Nina, El Nino, or ENSO?


Welcome to the blog weatherfromflorida. ENSO = ElNino Southern Oscillation, It's comprised of the extremes of ELNino, and LaNina, and the neutral conditions inbetween.

Here's an explanation (others abound)& an update.
ENSO

ENSO Update
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373. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
10:14 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
showers thunder diminishing movin out clearing shortly with breezy somewhat cooler conditions s se fla
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 171 Comments: 53846
372. westernmob
7:20 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
One silver lining: Lake Lanier, GA flood plain got over 2 inches of rain
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371. Ivansrvivr
6:42 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
I was taking pics a few minutes ago, and I noticed that the low level clouds were moving westward. That means a seabreeze is setting up. That could add fuel to the fire, and even promote rotation in stronger storms.
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370. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
6:36 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
heavy storms sse of lake o offshore miami and north of there fla 66 dbz max some rotation detected
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 171 Comments: 53846
369. Weather456
1:52 PM AST on March 23, 2008
366. benirica 1:42 PM AST on March 23, 2008
hey all. how can i send the doc pics?
i have some awesome pictures from the impressive waves brought to Puerto Rico from a winter storm in the north atlantic.
would love to share them .


Look in the upper right hand corner of the blog under About JeffMasters.....click on Contact This Blog's Aurthor. This will then send you to wunder email page so you can send him the links to the images or web page(s) where the images are located via wunder email.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
368. Tazmanian
10:49 AM PDT on March 23, 2008
by the way dos any one see any thing missing???


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367. Ivansrvivr
5:48 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
Storms developing here on East Coast. Got a good photo of how dark and low those clouds are hanging.
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366. benirica
5:41 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
hey all. how can i send the doc pics?
i have some awesome pictures from the impressive waves brought to Puerto Rico from a winter storm in the north atlantic.
would love to share them .
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365. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
5:17 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
thundershowers still occurring over s fla
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 171 Comments: 53846
364. Ivansrvivr
5:11 PM GMT on March 23, 2008
I had 6 inches of rain yesterday/this morning.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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